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san diego banana seeds

San diego banana seeds

Cavendish bananas are propagated by pups or suckers, pieces of rhizome that form into miniature banana plants that can be severed from the parent and planted to become a separate plant. In the wild, bananas are propagated via seed. You, too, can grow seed grown bananas.

Commercially grown bananas that are cultivated specifically for consumption don’t have seeds. Over time, they have been modified to have three sets of genes instead of two (triploid) and produce no seeds. In nature, however, one encounters many banana types with seeds; in fact, some seeds are so large it is difficult to get to the pulp. That said, can you grow bananas from seed? Read on to find out about growing banana trees from seeds.

Can You Grow Bananas from Seed?

When germinating banana seeds, even hardy bananas, keep the temperature at least 60 degrees F. (15 C.). Different varieties respond to temperature fluxes differently, however. Some do well with 19 hours of cool and five hours of warm temps. Using a heated propagator and turning it on during the day and off at night may be the easiest way to monitor temperature fluctuations.

Prepare an outdoor bed in a sunny area or use a seed tray or other container and fill with potting soil enriched with plenty of organic compost in the amount of 60% sand or airy loam to 40% organic matter. Sow the banana seeds 1/4 inch (6 mm.) deep and backfill with compost. Water the seeds until the soil is moist, not drenched, and maintain damp conditions while growing banana trees from seeds.

Propagating Banana Plants

As mentioned above, the banana you are eating for breakfast has been genetically tinkered with to lack seeds and are usually Cavendish bananas. There are many other banana varieties out there and they do contain seeds.

San diego banana seeds

“Ungassed” (not treated with ethylene) bananas show up at the supermarket fully green.

Harvest by cutting the stalk when the bananas are green and plump. The stalk should be hung in a cool, shady area. Since ethylene stimulates ripening, and mature fruit emits this gas, ripening can be hastened by covering the bunch with a paper or plastic bag.

That song galvanized a nation that desperately wanted more songs about bananas.

The ideal temperature range for banana growing is 75 to 85 degrees. They grow best in full sun, but 90 degree-plus temperatures can scorch leaves and fruit.

Although incorrectly referred to as banana trees, what appears to be a trunk is actually many leaves tightly wrapped around a single stem.

Most banana plants grow to 15-feet tall. Some reach 25 feet with leaves that can grow to be 9 feet long and 2 feet wide.

The Food and Agriculture Organization says bananas are grown in 135 countries primarily for their fruit, but also to make fiber, soap, banana wine and banana beer.

My little boomerangs have been happy with a quarterly application of 8:10:8 fertilizer.

(No bananas were harmed during the writing of this article).

San diego banana seeds

I’m now in the foothills, Sunset Zone 20, where we get at least a touch of frost every winter. Bananas don’t like frost, of course. Here I’ve learned to put my bananas near a south-facing wall for the best frost protection. (Mere frost won’t kill a banana plant, but it does slow down its fruit production by damaging leaves.)

I’ve always tried to limit my banana families to a mother, who is fruiting, and only two or three children. Four plants total seems to be an effective number for a banana mat. If more are allowed to grow, it’s said that they won’t fruit quite as well. I’ve never tested this personally, but from observing the banana mats of others it does seem true.

How banana plants grow